A smoke detector raised the alarm when fire broke out in the kitchen of a Marsden home early this morning.
A crew from South Shields fire station was called to a home in Quarry Lane at 4.20am.
"The occupiers were alerted by their smoker detector," said watch manager James Ferguson.
"The damage was quite minimal and no body was hurt.
"The occupier had nigh on extinguished the fire prior to our arrival.
"The message we want to get out is for people to check their smoke detectors.
"Had the smoke detector not worked on this occasion, it could have been much worse."